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2 years
Autumn 2024
Online programme/course sessions

Do you want to better understand our rapidly changing world marked by multiple, complex and interconnected crises? Do you want to explore how societal crises such as poverty, inequality, displacement, pandemic events, climate change and environmental degradation can be addressed? Are you interested in learning more about environmental, social, economic and political facilitators and obstacles to development? 

In the Global Development, Crisis and Change programme you will study development and social change through the lens of contemporary crises unfolding across the globe. You will learn about the underlying reasons behind different crises, and the social and economic changes they can lead to. The programme provides insights into how crises are understood, communicated and addressed across different contexts, as well as interconnections between different crises. You will also learn about how crises affect people unequally because of social differentiation within and across culturally complex contexts.

This master’s programme is a full-time blended programme, consisting of online learning and two physical gatherings (one in Kristiansand and one in Sri Lanka). Students who need to apply for a visa to come to Norway, can choose to apply for a short-term visa for the face-to-face session in August, or can apply for a student visa and stay on campus during the two years.

What do you learn?

In this programme you will learn about theories and findings concerning development, crisis and social change. You will explore how theoretical knowledge provides insight for solving practical problems, but equally important, how practice can inform theories and policies. The programme is cross disciplinary, and you will be introduced to a variety of disciplines, including political science, sociology, anthropology, communication and media studies and geography. In addition, you will be well skilled in cross cultural communication and collaboration.

Cooperation is a fundamental idea for the programme. The pedagogy is learner focused, and will include group work, discussions and joint assignments. The online tuition, instruction and supervision takes place in virtual classrooms. The programme is full time, and we expect all students to participate actively, take responsibility for their own learning and take part in the development of an optimal learning environment.

In the beginning of the first semester, you will participate in an obligatory face-to-face session at UiA. Here you will spend two weeks with your fellow students, professors and tutors. The face-to-face session will be an introduction to learning resources, computer technology, applied pedagogies and the start-up of the courses. The second face-to-face session will take place in the second semester (four weeks in May/June) at our partner institution in Sri Lanka.

Half of the third semester (15 ECTS) and the whole of the fourth semester (30 ECTS) will be fully devoted to the writing of a master’s thesis - building upon coursework and your personal experiences and focusing on problems and issues of high personal interest and to the societies and institutions you represent. You will be encouraged to do fieldwork in a developing country in connection with your master's thesis. We consider this experience to be of particular value for research on environment and development issues.

Job opportunities

Graduates from the master's programme qualify for work related to:

  • development processes, in both public and private sector companies
  • administration and management of development projects and humanitarian work
  • public administration
  • NGOs (in Norway or abroad), other humanitarian actors and agencies
  • work within the business community, for example CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility)
  • work related to refugees and immigrants 
  • work in diplomacy and multilateral organizations
  • work related to sustainability and climate change on both local and global arenas

Course structure

Display entire program

Admission requirements

The general requirements is completed bachelor's degree of minimum 3 years' duration (180 ECTS).

Other requirements:

  1. Either: a major subject of at least 80 ECTS within the social sciences.
    Or: an integrated programme of at least two years duration within social sciences.
    Examples of relevant fields of study: Development Studies, Planning, Geography, Sociology, Social Anthropology, Politics and Business Administration. 
  2. Social science methods, at least 7,5 ECTS.

A weighted, average grade of C or better is required.

For further information, see regulations concerning admission to programmes and courses at the University of Agder, § 24.

Application period

  • Non EU/EEA international applicants: From 1 November till 1 December (subject to change)
  • EU/EEA applicants: From 1 February till 1 March.
  • Nordic citizens and applicants with a permanent or renewable residence permit in Norway: From 1 February till 15 April.

Tuition fees

The Norwegian government has introduced tuition fees for students from countries outside of the EU/EEA and Switzerland.

Please read more about the tuition fees here.

Student exchange

Four weeks mandatory face to face meeting in Sri Lanka. Most students undertake field work for 6 weeks to 3 months.

Other than this, student exchange is not an option in this study programme.

Further studies

The master’s programme can qualify for admission to the Faculty of Social Sciences' PhD programme or other relevant PhD programmes.


Application deadline

1 Dec (subject to change)/1 March



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